News & Analysis as of

Class Action Round-Up: Summer 2015

The big news this quarter is the U.S. Supreme Court’s acceptance of Tyson Foods, Inc. v. Bouaphakeo, an employment case likely to have major ramifications across the whole spectrum of class action litigation. The Court is set...more

Guest Post - The Sweet Smell of Preemption Overcomes Plaintiffs’ Stinky Consumer Fraud Claims

The ingenuity of our friends in the plaintiffs’ bar is never-ending and always fascinating, like Cyrano de Bergerac’s prodigious proboscis. For example, this post is about a case brought by some resourceful lawyers who did ...more

Legislative Action to Remove Microbeads from Personal Care Products Intensifies

The International Campaign Against Microbeads in Cosmetics is most likely celebrating this week, following the California State Legislature’s passage of a bill that would prohibit the use of plastic microbeads in personal...more

What’s in a Name? When You’re Selling a Food with an Established Federal Standard of Identity, a Whole Lot!

A bluntly labeled section of the Code of Federal Regulations – “Mayonnaise” – provides a description of this particular food dressing, the food’s required ingredients, optional ingredients, and how to declare those...more

Decision to Expand Panels Resides with PTAB, Not Parties - Conopco, Inc. dba Unilever v. Procter & Gamble

In two recent decisions by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board), the Board denied petitioner requests for rehearing by an expanded panel under 37 C.F.R. § 42.71(c). Conopco, Inc. dba Unilever v. Procter & Gamble,...more

Advertising Law - July 2015

Try, Try Again: Lawmakers Reintroduce Do Not Track Kids Act - A group of federal lawmakers reintroduced the Do Not Track Kids Act, a bill to amend the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), with some changes...more

PTAB: We Are Disinclined to Acquiesce to Your Rehearing Request - Conopco Inc. dba Unilever, v. The Procter & Gamble Company

In a decision denying rehearing of the order denying institution of an inter partes review (IPR), the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB or Board) explained the factors it considers in making institution decisions based on...more

Unilever Gets Egg On Its Face: Maker of Hellmann’s Sues Upstart Hampton Creek for False Advertising

Unilever, the maker of Hellmann’s Mayonnaise, has filed a lawsuit in New Jersey federal court against Hampton Creek foods over a competing product called Just Mayo. As many folks know, Hampton Creek is a food start-up focused...more

PTAB Denies Follow-On Petition for Inter Partes Review Including Prior Art and Arguments Raised in Earlier Petition by Same...

Petitioner Unilever filed an earlier petition for IPR of 33 claims of a patent. In the Decision on Institution, the Board denied review of 11 claims and granted review of the rest. Unilever then filed a second petition for...more

Two Consumer Class Actions Settle for (Mostly) Nominal Amounts Per Plaintiff

Two recent false advertising class action settlements illustrate some of the myriad ways to structure settlements, and also reflect the real risks of these lawsuits when early-stage efforts to dismiss them are...more

Powering Sustainability

Recent focus on distributed generation has not addressed how companies will fully meet increasing sustainability commitments, including goals of being “100% powered by renewable energy.” Customers and utilities are exploring...more

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